The Legend of Heroes: Hajimari no Kiseki: Toshihiro Kondo Comments on the Protagonists, Cross Story and Battle Systems
Falcom is already working on the Kiseki game coming after PS4 exclusive The Legend of Heroes: Hajimari no Kiseki and on a new graphic engine.
Falcom officially announced The Legend of Heroes: Hajimari no Kiseki on PS4 after months of teasing. If you’ve missed that, we suggest reading game’s first story details in our previous article. Following this announcement, Dengeki Online published a video interview with Falcom President Toshihiro Kondo, sharing comments on Hajimari no Kiseki. Toshihiro Kondo most notably mentioned the game was initially supposed to be a Gaiden game but isn’t anymore, and how it’s similar but very different from Trails in the Sky: the 3rd. We translated the interview below.
This article contains big spoilers for Trails of Cold Steel 4 and the Trails series.
In Dengeki Online’s video interview, Toshihiro Kondo first explained how the title “Hajimari no Kiseki” reflects how the Kiseki/Trails series is fully entering its second half, and this game is the beginning of the end of the series. The main artwork for Hajimari no Kiseki shows the Grandmaster of Ouroboros. It’s the first time her face has been revealed. Kondo explained they decided to fully reveal her to show fans Falcom is resolved to reveal the biggest mysteries of the series starting now. The development team seemingly made this artwork of the Grandmaster for a while now, and they suggested to Kondo they should publish it for Hajimari no Kiseki‘s reveal.
Next, Kondo explained that the three stories of Hajimari no Kiseki begin sometime after Olivert’s wedding ceremony shown at the end of Trails of Cold Steel 4. The three stories will have slightly different starting points in time, but they take place during the same timeframe.
As for the three protagonists, Kondo said without naming them that we know who they are, except for one, hinting at “The Hermit” who should be this masked character. Hajimari no Kiseki actually won’t reveal their identity right away, and it’ll be the first time in the Kiseki series we’ll play a protagonist without knowing their true identity. Moreover, there were absolutely no hints in the series until now regarding the identity of the masked character and the heterochromia girl accompanying them, so it’s useless to try and guess who they are. Though, the fact that they’re wearing a mask in itself might be a hint. In any case, these two characters will be extremely important in the story starting now.
When asked about whether the three protagonists start their stories in three different regions of the Zemuria continent or not, Kondo only answered that they initially start in places far away from each other, hinting that they might meet at some point. The development team wish to fully use the three points of views, hinting that assuming the protagonists do meet, they won’t stay together.
Hajimari no Kiseki has over 50 playable characters. Kondo explained that some of these are characters who only appeared as enemies until now, and some are brand-new characters. These new characters will be important for the future developments of the story. The title being Hajimari, Beginnings, means we’ll see the beginning of these new characters’ stories. And of course, among these new characters, some are linked to all the previous characters and story elements brought up in the series until now. Fans who played the whole series will think “oh, they’re connected that way” when seeing these new characters.
Hajimari no Kiseki will depict how Crossbell will become independent again, and there are many locations linked to these events we’ll see in 3D for the first time in the game.
While Trails in the Sky the 3rd is also called a “Gaiden game”, Hajimari no Kiseki will be completely different. Just like Trails in the Sky the 3rd, Hajimari no Kiseki is setting the stage for what will come next, the stories focusing on the eastern part of Zemuria. However, Hajimari no Kiseki has tons of content along with very important story events depicted in it. Kondo initially planned Hajimari no Kiseki as a smaller Gaiden game but it is now a fully-fledged game. As such, we won’t call it a “Gaiden game” anymore now to avoid the implication that its small content-wise.
As for the Episodes focusing on each playable character, Kondo said we’ll get to see many characters who were involved with each protagonist of the series until now. We’ll also get to see characters we haven’t seen in a while, showing us how they are faring now.
Toshihiro Kondo also gave more details on Hajimari no Kiseki‘s Cross Story system. While you can freely switch protagonists at any time, at some points in the game, you might get forced to switch. Because one protagonist’s story might not advance until you’ve progressed in another protagonist’s storyline.
Regarding Hajimari no Kiseki‘s battle system, it’ll be based on Trails of Cold Steel 4‘s battle system, along with new elements. Most notably, Falcom is planning to polish the battle system to make it easy to use more characters. They’re thinking about how to make a flashy battle system to keep up with the over 50 playable characters.
At the end of the video interview, Toshihiro Kondo mentioned how Falcom is already working on the game following Hajimari no Kiseki, so fans won’t wait too long for it. He previously mentioned months ago that Falcom is working on two Kiseki games, so no surprise there. He also teased that this next game will have many new elements, both regarding its story and its game systems.
According to reporter Suzuki (shoutout to Renka Schedule for pointing it out) during the shareholders’ meeting on December 18, Falcom also mentioned they’re working on a brand new graphical engine. This engine will be even better than Sony’s Phyre Engine used for the Trails of Cold Steel games and will make Falcom’s games look much better. Kondo mentioned though that games using this new engine won’t come anytime soon, so it’s possible even the Kiseki/Trails game following Hajimari no Kiseki won’t be using this engine. Especially since this engine isn’t ready yet, but the game following Hajimari no Kiseki is coming soon.
The Legend of Heroes: Hajimari no Kiseki was first teased by Falcom in March 2019. It was furthermore teased with screenshots and story hints in June 2019, at the Kiseki Series 15th Anniversary Event. Lastly, Falcom mentioned in November that a new Kiseki game would be announced before the end of 2019 and launch by September 2020. The latest Kiseki/Trails game released in the west is The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel 3, which is available on PS4 and is coming to Switch in early 2020. Toshihiro Kondo also previously told DualShockers we might get Zero no Kiseki: Kai and Ao no Kiseki: Kai in the west. You can read the full interview here. Falcom also wishes to make a new Ys Vs Kiseki game.
The Legend of Heroes: Hajimari no Kiseki is planned for a Summer 2020 release on PS4 in Japan. Seeing the game is freshly revealed, we don’t have any news regarding a western release yet.